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How auto dealerships can clean up profits with carwashing services

Auto dealerships can turn their businesses from cost centers to profit centers by offering carwashing services.


Contributor Jack Allison discusses how auto dealerships can expand their businesses by offering carwashing services in the article “From cost center to profit center,” featured in a past issue of Professional Carwashing & Detailing.

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“Even though owners of auto dealerships might not realize they are part of the carwash business, most carwash professionals would say they definitely are. Since these businesses perform similar car care functions of a professional carwash location, dealerships are indeed part of this industry,” explains Allison in the article. “In fact, what many auto dealers do not realize is that they could be investing in an automated wash instead of allocating the funds for the employees and labor to perform these tasks.”

Dealerships can boost their Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) scores by incorporating carwashes within their promotions and discounts, asserts Allison in the article, noting how a dealer may offer a free wash with a service visit, as an example. “Successful customer relationship management (CRM) programs keep customers loyal and CSI scores high,” he adds in the article.


“Aside from CRM and CSI benefits, an auto dealership should include carwash services because of the benefits to the dealer that go beyond customer satisfaction, including an elevated public perception regarding the quality of that dealership as a whole,” says Allison in the article. “A dealership must not only consider if new customers are attracted to the business because of impressive curb appeal, but also if the cars on the property are clean and well-presented.”

Allison continues in the article by listing the following scenarios for which dealerships can successfully utilize carwashing services to boost public perception:

  • Vehicles in for service
  • New units delivered by means of transport
  • Trade-ins
  • Rentals
  • Courtesy loaners
  • Demos
  • Inventory rotation.

“Providing carwash services at auto dealerships can not only keep customers happy while reducing costs and expenses, but they can also boost profits,” states Allison in the article.


He continues by discussing how a dealership can also benefit from providing carwashing services as a stand-alone profit center, nothing that the ideal scenario is to:

  • Provide free washes with a service to existing customers, which promotes higher CSI scores.
  • Offer discount washes to customers not combined with a service visit, which in turn brings in money.
  • Offer full price washes to the general public, leading to even more profits.

Read more about how auto dealerships are in the business of carwashing here.

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